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Round-the-clock homing behavior of a subsocial shield bug, Parastrachia japonensis (Heteroptera: Parastrachiidae), using path integration.

Zoological science

Spatial Behavior, physiology, Feeding Behavior, Cues, Female, Heteroptera, Homing Behavior, Light, Locomotion, Orientation, Animals, Circadian Rhythm

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      Abstract

      Females of the subsocial shield bug, Parastrachia japonensis (Parastrachiidae), are central-place foragers, collecting drupes for their young from nearby host trees by walking along the forest floor both during the day and at night. Because burrows are often some distance from the drupe-shedding tree, the bugs must repeatedly leave their burrows, search for drupes, and return to the burrows. After a bug leaves its burrow, it searches arduously until it encounters a drupe. When a drupe is obtained, the bug always takes the shortest route back to its burrow. It has been clarified that this bug utilizes path integration during diurnal provisioning excursions. In this paper, we examined nocturnal behavior and some parameters of the path integration utilized by P. japonensis. There were no observable differences between day and night in the patterns of foraging and direct-homing behavior. When the bug was displaced to another position during the day or night, it always walked straight toward the fictive burrow, the site where the burrow should be if it had been displaced along with the bug, and then displayed searching behavior in the vicinity of the fictive burrow. The distance of the straight run corresponded accurately with a straight line between the burrow and the place where the bug obtained the drupe. These results indicate that P. japonensis orients toward the burrow using path integration both during diurnal and nocturnal provisioning behavior.

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      Journal
      10.2108/zsj.24.535
      17867854

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